The lowest price is not always the greatest bargain when it’s all said and done, and the highest price is not a guarantee of a job well done. The best way to judge is by how thorough the contractor is when he discusses your work, how knowledgeable and willing he is to educate you, and how the work he proposes to do stacks up to the others who are bidding. Equipment prices all usually run in the same ballpark, and all contractors can offer a variety of pricing options where equipment is concerned. Warranties are important to consider. Look beyond the equipment cost to see what you’re getting in terms of the installation and design of the duct system itself — that’s where the real value is and where the apples and oranges begin to differentiate themselves.